Talent acquisition will continue to be a key focus for MENA companies in 2017 and recruiters will be even busier this year, focusing on quality of hiring. Jobs pertaining to operations, sales and engineering will be the highest priority roles to fill in 2017. This was highlighted in the ‘MENA Recruiting Trends 2017’ report released by LinkedIn.
According to the report that took into account survey responses of over 170 corporate talent acquisition leaders across MENA, over 81 percent of talent leaders feel that talent is the number one priority in their organization and in 2017 this will gain even more prominence. Majority of recruiting leaders indicate they will be very busy in the coming year with the report revealing that over 60 percent of teams are preparing for an increase in hiring volume while 29 percent feel it will decrease and 11 percent feel budgets and recruiting team headcounts will stay flat.
“The recruiting organization is not the flashiest department. It doesn’t directly bring in revenue or create game-changing products. Yet, it is the quiet enabler behind company successes and this has not gone unnoticed. In recent years, talent and HR leaders in MENA have gained a prominent spot on the C-suite table, driving decisions about the future of the company. Talent leaders feel confident that their department is helping define the future of their company,” said Ali Matar, Head of LinkedIn Talent Solutions for Growth Markets, Southern Europe, Middle East and North Africa.
The report also reveals that operations, sales and engineering will be the highest priority roles to fill in 2017. “The demand for operations, sales and engineering talent is so prevalent that recruiting teams in MENA have to start thinking more strategically about how to find and recruit these talent pools. Relying on data to pinpoint locations where the supply of talent is higher than the demand is a crucial first step. Another successful tactic is targeting each of these functions with highly customized employer branding content,” added Mr Matar.
Some of the other trends that will define recruiting in MENA in 2017 include:
• Social professional networks will continue to remain the top source of quality talent
According to LinkedIn’s research, MENA business will continue to use social professional networks such as LinkedIn to identify and hire new talent, further strengthening the reign of social media. Since referred employees are faster to hire, perform better, and stay longer in the company, employee referrals as well as third-party website/online job boards will continue to be used to facilitate better hiring.
• The bulk of the talent acquisition budget will go to traditional tactics
Despite talent leaders sharing that employee referrals are one of the top sources of quality hires, most of them barely invest in building out a strong referral program. Same with employer branding – publicized as one of the most important trends, it is about the last places where teams invest. The bulk of the team’s budget goes to more traditional tactics like posting jobs. 22 percent of hiring teams will continue to invest their budgets in job postings and recruitment agencies in 2017.
• If money weren’t a constraint, talent leaders would invest in employer branding and training for recruiters
2017 will see leaders being interested other tactics to facilitate better and qualitative hiring.
If budgets weren’t an issue for teams, most MENA leaders, almost 52 percent would prioritize investing in long-term strategic plays like employer branding. 51 percent would invest in upskilling their team and 37 percent would look at new technologies instead of some of the short-term needs that they currently resource.
• Automation, customer relationship management tools for recruiting and soft skills assessments will define the future of recruiting:
Automation, customer relationship management tools for recruiting and soft skills assessments that predict job success are the top trends that will shape the recruiting industry in the next few years. Given that recruiters report limited headcount and budget, while hiring demands are growing, automation is top of mind for the industry with 38 percent of companies considering innovative interviewing tools for hiring, followed by customer relationship management tools at 36 percent. Automation would both allow for speed and also remove human bias. It would also allow for better ways to screen candidates for soft-skills, which over 60% of hiring managers agree is a big challenge and it is also the third most popular trend in MENA.
This report is based on the survey responses of over 170 corporate talent acquisition leaders across MENA. All respondents are at the manager level or higher.